Arsalan Kazemi must have ball magnets on his hands. Whenever Kazemi is remotely near a loose ball it magically appears in the rebounding machine’s hands. As we look back at the season, it is hard to imagine the Ducks without Kazemi, who played an integral part of the rotation. Unlike players who are known as “pure shooters”, Kazemi is the first “pure rebounder” I have seen. A good chunk of his buckets come off offensive rebounds leading to easy put backs.
Now that the first Iranian-born basketball player in Division I has exhausted his eligibility, what will he do next? Kazemi, who was not well-known, made a name for himself in the tournament purely off hustle and rebounds. He outplayed the big men of Oklahoma State and Saint Louis, posting 17 and 16 rebounds. Next came the eventual National Champions – Louisville – where Kazemi posted a double-double with 12 rebounds and 11 points. These games gave Kazemi great exposure and opened some NBA eyes, which could pay dividends down the road.
In the first round of play against Oklahoma State, Heat president Pat Riley attended the game, leaving us to consider the possibility of Arsalan going to the Heat. Though maybe farfetched, it’s fun to imagine Kazemi snagging every rebound and kicking it back out to Lebron. Now that would not be fair. In all reality Kazemi has a legitimate shot at making an NBA roster. He has intangibles that could benefit teams, making him a hot commodity. If Kazemi can translate what he did in his college career to the NBA, he will have a long and successful career. We at Fishduck wish him the best of luck and cannot wait to see him throwing alley-oops to Lebron in South Beach.
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